Saturday, 25 January 2014

Buying Art and Investing In Soul

When buying from an artist

“When you buy from an independent artist, you are buying more than just a painting or a novel or a song. You are buying hundreds of hours of experimentation and thousands of failures. You are buying days, weeks, months and years of frustration and moments of pure joy. You are buying nights of worry about paying the rent, having enough money to feed the children, the birds, the dog. You aren't just buying a thing, you are buying a piece of heart, part of a soul, a private moment in someone’s life. Most importantly, you’re buying the artist more time to do something they are truly passionate about; something that makes all of the above worth the fear and the doubt; something that puts the life into the living."

The original quote above is from the artist Rebekah Joy Plett

I absolutely love this quote. It encapsulates both the journey of the artist and also the contribution made by all those people who support artistic endeavour by investing in it, in whatever way. It also serves to encourage us to spend that little extra to invest in something that will always be more magical and have greater longevity than a relatively soulless (even if superficially beautiful) piece of manufactured ‘art.’

A piece of Art always comes with a story, and also continues to create stories around it.

In our modern society, where we are surrounded by constant stimulation and a host of amazing manufactured objects and images, sold for mere pennies, it is easy to become desensitised to both natural beauty, and the individual beauty of the creations of others.

I have had many discussions about the magical way that a sculpture or carving seems to look better with age, whereas anything manufactured seems to descend into entropy rather too quickly and end up looking tired and lifeless.

I own a few ‘plastic’ sculptures that are superficially incredibly beautiful, but lack soul. Somehow they don’t have that inner ‘glow’ that an individually made piece of sculpture does. They did cost me mere pennies, but I have no feeling for the artist that created the original, that made the mould, from which these many are cast.

Some strange alchemy does go into every piece of work I make, a piece of me. I used to joke at one time, that I always seem to end up cutting myself and bleeding a little onto every piece of work that I made, as if it demanded that of me, some strange ancient blood sacrifice. Thankfully that doesn’t happen as often as it used to but I still find the ‘blood sacrifice’ image a powerful metaphor for the creative process!

I am sure that very many different energetic parts of me end up woven into the items that I make, hopefully creating that inner ‘glow’ and contributing to the stories that that sculpture / piece continues to tell long after it has left my hands.

Thank you again to Rebekah Joy Plett for such a wonderful quote.

Thanks for reading!


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